Article

Board Minutes 02-09-18

APA Colorado Board Meeting Minutes
Friday February 9, 2018

 
Denver Regional Council of Governments
1290 N Broadway Suite 100
Denver, CO 80203
 
The meeting was called to order at 2:03 p.m.
 
Roll Call
Present:
Michelle Stephens, President 
Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
Nick Vander Kwaak, VP External Affairs
Allison Crump, Professional Development Officer
Scott Bressler, Metro Representative
Libby Tart Schoenfelder, Metro Representative
Maureen Paz de Araujo, South Central Representative
Mark Williams, Southwest Area Representative
Melanie Sloan, North Central Representative
Anna Gagne Laybourn, Central Mountain Area Rep
Carey McAndrews, Faculty Representative
Susan Wood, Legislative Committee Co-Chair
Ethan Mobley, Northwest Area Representative
Eric Heil, Legislative Committee Co-Chair
Brandon Jenson, EPP Co-Representative
 
Absent:
Vacant, Western Planner Representative
Kate Lucas, Student Representative
Paul Rosenberg, Public Official Representative
Hillary Seminick, VP of Communications
 
Guests:
Stephanie Ball; Brandon Cammarata; Andy Taylor; Brad Calvert
 
Staff: 
Shelia Booth, Chapter Administrator
 
1. Opening Remarks – Michelle Stephens, President
Michelle asked the Board how the first town hall went. Brandon said he thought it went well; he just wished there were more attendees. Others agreed and said the timing might have been a factor with work constraints. Susan agreed it went well and suggested more notice and an incentive for people to join next year. The Board suggested more time for committees and area representatives to talk and more time for dialogue with everyone in attendance at the end. Michelle asked the Board to think of ways to draw more people. Allison suggested marketing it more and earlier. Nick said he felt it was a good way to reach people who want to be involved but aren’t part of a committee. Leah encouraged the Board to follow up with those who spoke and had suggestions for the Chapter. Scott concurred, and Libby liked having the committees participate noting the value that has for them. Maureen said that the small turnout might be a positive because it allowed everyone to engage in the conversation and was less formal. Melanie said she liked the informal atmosphere and would like to have the Board come up with ideas to share the conversations with the rest of the Chapter’s membership. Michele concluded that she too liked hearing from the committees and would like to send out a follow up survey to those who registered to get feedback. 
 
Michelle then noted that it was a combined town hall and annual board meeting. She asked if the Board thought the two should be separate events. She suggested holding them six months apart with the Annual Board meeting in January and the town hall in June. Scott suggested holding a town hall at the conference. Shelia stated that instead of doing the annual board meeting at the conference, this year the plan is to do Coffee with Committees/ Breakfast with the Board on Friday morning. Nick noted that all board meetings are open to the public and suggested specifying dates throughout the year for discussion of specific topics and invite members to come. Libby thought pulling the committees together to talk about strategy would help and stated that the May meeting with the workshop might be a good idea. She said that many of the committee reported that they want to align their goals with those of the Strategic Plan. Brandon said he would like to see the outcomes of the membership survey and implement those action items to encourage more participation. Michelle reiterated Nick’s idea that maybe each board meeting is changed to a town hall and a topic announced for discussion at for the last 30 minutes of each meeting. 
 
Michelle asked Shelia to add a recap of the above items and the topics from the annual board to the next agenda.
 
2. Consent Agenda:
 
a. December 2017 Minutes - Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
b. Minutes Email Vote January 2018 – Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
c. Minutes Email Vote February 2018 – Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
d. December 2017 Financial Report - Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
e. 2017 Year End Financials - Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
f. January 2018 Financial Report - Leah Dawson, Secretary/Treasurer
g. Appointment of 2018 Planning Institute of Colorado Board – Michelle Stephens, President
h. Board Ratification of Presidential Appointment: Public Official Representative – Michelle Stephens, President
i. Award of 2018 AICP Exam Scholarships – Allison Crump, Professional Development Officer
 
Michelle introduced the consent agenda items and asked if the Board would like to pull any items for discussion or questions. Hearing no request, she asked for a motion to approve.
 
Motion by Eric to approve the consent agenda.
Second by Ethan
Discussion: None
Vote:  Unanimous
 
3. Committee Updates
 
a. APAS – Kate Lucas, Student Representative
Stephanie Ball spoke for APAS in Kate’s absence. She reviewed the Committee’s fall budget stating APAS spent $600 on events and gained $550 in t-shirt sales. They hold general student meetings each month and are scheduling speakers for brown bag lunch series. They plan to address topics such as transportation, the hyper loop, brownfields, etc. She then stated the job shadowing program will launch February 19th and they have a spring break trip around Colorado planned again this year. Students have plans to volunteer at the Spring Transportation symposium and they have a few additional social events planned through the rest of the year. They hope to build upon existing partnerships with WTS, APA Colorado and EPP. She concluded by stating that she has been encouraging students to complete the Mentorship survey to show a strong interest in a potential program. 
 
b. Emerging Planning Professionals –Brandon Jenson, Committee Chairs
Brandon said he had nothing new to report that had not already been discussed at the previous meeting.
 
c. Healthy Communities Committee – Shelia Booth
Shelia said he had nothing new to report.
 
d. Legislative Committee – Eric Heil & Susan Wood, Committee Co-Chairs
Eric stated that there is a potential for a bill to limit the number of building permits along the Front Range coming from a Golden citizen. He stated it would be a bill worth watching and it might be an opportunity to reach out to the Home Builders Association for collaboration. Michelle asked how to get ahead of the issue and Eric responded that the bill is in the title approval stage of the process and then will be out for signatures. It would be a November 2018 ballot issue if it gets approved. He also noted that opposition will most likely be very well funded. Susan said this is a good opportunity for education and the funded opposition might be our opportunity. Allison suggested discussing the bills with ULI and prepare similar messaging before the Chapter comes out publicly with a position. Libby said there are several groups we’ve partnered with in the past who would likely be interested. Eric suggested a tactic to understand what the bill includes and make sure affordable housing could be exempt.
 
Michele asked if the Legislative Committee meeting notes were on the Committee’s webpage and asked if the bill tracker was updated. Susan responded that no one took notes or posted them and that the online bill tracker is updated.
 
Eric then discussed bill 142 and the pilot sustainability community in Boulder. He said the Committee is following the bill and will come back to the Board if the Chapter needs to take a position. Susan said the bill would allow the community to completely sidestep the planning process. 
 
e. Membership Committee – Shelia Booth, Chapter Administrator
Shelia said the Committee reviewed a list of questions and is redlining the final draft. The goal is to have the survey live by mid-February. 
 
f. Outreach & Communications Committee - Hillary Seminick & Nick Vander Kwaak, Committee Co-Chairs
Nick said the Committee is working on the newsletter and plans to have it published by the following week. She said it was difficult getting articles and that she and staff had to recruit volunteers. Nick said he wants questions about communication on the survey. Shelia said she would send the committee a copy of the survey.
 
g. PIC Board - Eric Heil, President
No report.
 
h. Professional Development Committee – Allison Crump, Chair
Allison said she better understands the PDO positions after being in the seat for a year and asked if the Board had any specific questions she could ask leadership while attending the National Planning Conference (NPC) in New Orleans. Brandon said the EPP and APAS members have expressed a lot of interest in the AICP Candidate Pilot process and he would like to know how other PDOs are getting information out to eligible members. Allison then noted the conference call for sessions deadline and next steps in the review process.
 
i. Sustainability Committee – Libby Tart-Schoenfelder, Chair
Libby stated that the Committee has asked for newsletter themes and timelines and have also requested to be involved in strategic planning for the Chapter. Michelle said the Committees should be invited to the May board meeting. She then asked staff and the Outreach & Communication Committee to pass along the newsletter themes and timelines.
 
j. Youth in Planning– Michelle Stephens, Board Liaison
No report.
 
4. Chapter Administrator Report – Shelia Booth, Chapter Administrator
 
a. 2018 Spring Transportation Symposium 
Shelia said that she and the organizing committee continue to move forward. The Call for Speakers has been issued and ends the same day as the conference call for sessions. She noted that no one has stepped up to be the lead organization next year. USDOT can’t do it, WTS did it last year and ITE the year prior. Rocky Mountain ITS can’t and that leaves ASCE. Their Board said they aren’t willing to take it on and are looking for volunteers. Maureen stated that she has spoken with representatives from the ASCE Southern Colorado Branch since they seem to be more active.
 
b. 2018 Conference Planning
Shelia said that the conference theme has been chosen: Defining the Keystone of Planning. The graphic designer is working on the logo and she had hoped to have something to show but will forward a copy when it has been completed. She then stated that the call for sessions has opened and closes on March 2nd. She noted that there is a new online form that people can use this year, or they can upload the old form to the drop box site. She concluded that the registration contract with APA National has been completed and the plan is to have registration go live mid-June.
 
c. 2019 Conference Venue
Shelia said she is moving forward with the contract for Snowmass Village, noting there was some adjustment needed to the various room to accommodate the general sessions, but it has been worked out. She said she would be in Snowmass March 1st for a ski trip and will incorporate a site visit at that time
 
d. May 11th Board Meeting in Keystone
Shelia reminded the Board that the May 11th board meeting will be held in Keystone. She said the itinerary includes a morning site tour, workshop and afternoon board meeting. She then reviewed the attendance for the meeting and Michelle asked everyone to try to make it. Brandon asked what could be done for those who can’t attend, and Michelle said we would set the agenda in April. She noted that typically the Board would update the strategic plan, but that the current one is broad enough that it might not need to be updated. She said she would like to focus on action items to make sure we keep on track that. Brandon suggested adding a timeline. 
 
5. Old Business
 
a. Legislative Liaison Scope of Services – Eric Heil & Susan Wood, Legislative Committee Co-Chairs
Eric introduced the item, stating that based on the Board’s discussion at the November and December 2017 meetings, the Legislative Committee Co-Chairs met with Peak Government Affairs and drafted a Scope of Services. He said the activity level changes year to year based on legislative activity. He said some years are very active and some are not. Eric said the decision was to do a new scope and contract based on an hourly basis rather than salary basis. He said that Sol would be itemizing every 15 minutes and if approved, the contract would be retroactive to January 2018. He said the first bill was estimated at $3000 in January which was reasonable. He noted that with 90% of the work done is a three or four-month period, this should save the Chapter money. He also stated that the contract includes a clause that would not allow the legislative liaison to go over the total budget within the year period. The tracking sheets will show when things are getting done and where. Eric said the Sol and the Committee are aware that things can be lighter when nothing is happening and heavier with a more active session. Eric asked if there were any further questions and hearing none, Michelle asked for a motion.
 
Motion by Leah to approve the Scope of Services as presented.
Second by Allison
Discussion: None
Vote: Unanimous
 
b. Legislative Liaison Contract – Eric Heil & Susan Wood, Legislative Committee Co-Chairs
Eric said the contract reflects the previous discussion on the Scope of Services and runs for one calendar year. Michelle asked for a motion.
 
Motion by Libby to approve Legislative Liaison Contract as presented
Second by Maureen
Discussion: none
Vote: Unanimous
 
c. 2018 Legislative Agenda– Eric Heil & Susan Wood, Legislative Committee Co-Chairs
Susan informed the Board that the Legislative Committee had provided a legislative agenda in previous years. She then summarized and reviewed the results of the legislative survey. She said the top topics were: 1) Affordable Housing; 2) Transportation; 3) Water Conservation Planning; 4) Regional Cooperative Planning; and 5) Climate Change. 
 
Susan said the Legislative Agenda is used by Sol and the committee to inform legislators of the important topics to the Chapter. They are distributed to legislators, allied groups and anyone who is interested. She said the Legislative Committee has review and vetted the Agenda resulting in additional language about equity in some of the items. She concluded the Committee is seeking the Board’s approval and input. Michelle asked if there were any comments or questions. Hearing none she asked for a motion.
 
Motion by Eric to approve the 2018 APA Colorado Legislative Agenda as presented.
Second by Scott
Discussion: None
Vote: Unanimous
 
d. Chapter Administrator Annual Review – Michelle Stephens, President
Michelle asked to move into Executive Session and staff and all guests left the room.
 
6. New Business
a. 2018 Budget – Leah Dawson, Chapter Administrator
Michelle introduced the item to the Board by stating that he proposed budget has some “big asks” that aren’t common. She said the budget reflects the desire for APA Colorado to grow and become competitive, to better serve the members and the raise the Chapter’s profile. Leah then reviewed the income and expense figures, concluding that the proposal shows the Chapter ending in a net loss. 
 
Leah then began highlighting incomes and expenses that were different from previous years. First, is a request to budget for an intern to help staff. She, Michelle and staff discussed tasks that this intern would do throughout the year. The next item was joining the Colorado Nonprofit Association (CAN) which provides trainings, help desk, free postings, etc. Michelle said joining might offer support for staff and additional professional development. The next item discussed was for shared office space in downtown Denver. The Board discussed why this space was needed, who might use and what the benefit would be. Shelia or other Board members/Committee members/Chapter members could use it when she comes to Denver for board meetings or to meet with others. The space could also be a place to store marketing and other materials. Conference space could be used by the Board or committees for meetings. Leah the noted the increase in software expenses, chapter events, committee and area representative events, and personnel expenses with the new retirement plan. She also highlighted an increase in income and expenses for the state conference.
 
Shelia stated that in 2017, the budget was balanced but ended with a net gain of $7000 since the Chapter didn’t spend as much as had been budgeted. Eric said that the current economy was good, but he didn’t feel the Board should adopt a negative budget and should look at changes to at least have it balance. He said the number one thing the Chapter does is the conference and he didn’t feel the fees should be raised in 2018. He suggested that the conference fees should remain flat and the Board identify other alternatives to balance the 2018 budget. He concluded that he did support expansion of membership offerings. Allison agreed that the conference was important and keeping the quality of presentations and offering was important. The Board inquired why expenses would increase for the conference and Shelia replied it was a tied to rising costs and increased registration. She stated that with higher attendance comes higher costs.
 
The Board asked why it would need to join the CNA and Michelle said CNA has a help desk and free trainings that might be of benefit and used by staff, Board, Committee or Chapter members. The Chapter could join for one year and see if it is of benefit and if not, not renew next year. Susan noted that the Chapter was a member of CNA in the past and that the past Chapter Administrator took advantage of it. Michelle said she had asked other APA Chapters if they were members in their own states and most were not.
 
Brandon said the Board has talked about our successes and he wondered how that ties to the new expenses. He asked what the member benefit is would be for the shared office space, noting that it costs $2500 and the budget deficit is $2100. Melanie said she thought the benefit would be to have a location to conduct Chapter business and that shared office space is becoming the norm. Some Board members expressed a concern that the share office space is a Denver-centric request and were concerned with that. Libby suggested exploring other shared space options and locations, possibly doing an RFP. She agreed that having access to meeting space would be beneficial. 
 
Eric inquired about the increase in membership fees/dues from a national perspective. Michelle said APA National pushed a few years back to have all Chapter’s due based on a percentage of APA dues and not a flat fee. She stated that membership has increased over the last year so income from membership dues has increased without the Chapter increasing dues. Colorado’s membership dues are 25% of the APA dues.
 
Eric asked about the proposed increase in sponsorship income, noting that the Board should be mindful that it would require them to commit to help reach this goa. Nick said he feels the Board can reach the sponsorship income, but that there should be a contingency plan if they don’t. He also suggested that if the Board reached the sponsorship goal in 2018, they could consider the office space in 2017. Libby suggested that Area Representatives try to bring in small sponsorships for regional events.
 
The Board concurred that the budget should be balanced and began reviewing each budget line item for possible changes. They agreed to remove the shared office space, noting that they could talk about it later in the year if the need arises. The next item discussed was conference registration fees. Michelle noted that haven’t been raised in a while and that more people are coming each year. Eric suggested keeping the Early Bird rate the same but increase everything after that. Shelia noted that the EPP and PC rates don’t cover the actual cost of the event and the Board suggested possibly raising those. Eric suggested adding a one-day rate for PC that’s less that the regular one-day rate. He also suggested that sponsorship decrease to $35,000.  
 
Melanie inquired if the decision to raise or not raise conference fees had to be made now or if that could be postponed for a later discussion. Michelle agreed it could wait and said there are other incomes to consider. Susan asked if the budget had to be approved at the current meeting or if the Budget Committee had time to review comments and return with recommended changes. The Budget Committee said they would be willing to do that.
 
Motion by Eric to adopt the 2018 Budget with three changes:
a. Reduce sponsorship income to $35,000
b. Eliminate office space $2500
c. Reduce legislative research by $2500
d. Reduce internship by $4000
e. Add $1500
For lack of a second, the motion failed.
 
Brandon stated he agreed with some of Eric’s motion but though sponsorship income should remain at $40,000 and the intern amount should not be reduced.
 
Motion by Maureen to adopt the 2018 Budget with changes (below) and have it presented again at the April board meeting
a. Eliminate office space $2500
b. Reduce legislative research by $2500
c. Add $1500 for bonus
d. Difference of $1400 to be identified by Budget Committee
Second by Eric emphasizing that the Budget Committee still has work to be done.
Discussion: None
Vote: Unanimous
 
b. Form Nomination Committee – Shelia Booth, Chapter Administrator 
Shelia said it was time again to form the Nominating Committee. According to the Bylaws, the Committee must consist of at least three Chapter members with at least one person being a member of the Board and one person who has not previously served on the Board. Shelia reviewed the proposed election timeline and asked if there were any volunteers. Libby, Melanie, and Michelle volunteered. Shelia said she would seek a Chapter member who had not previously served to add to the committee.
 
Motion by Maureen to appoint Libby, Melanie, Michelle and a Chapter member who has not previously served on the Board (to be determined later) to the 2018 Nominating Committee
Second by Susan
Discussion: None
Vote: Unanimous
 
7. Board Member Updates
None.
 
8. Bylaws Committee – Brand Jenson, Committee Chari and Michelle Stephens, President
a. Appointed Board Members
b. Voting vs Non-Voting Board Members
 
Michelle suggested the item be tabled to the April meeting since there wasn’t adequate time to discuss. She asked Brandon to do a short introduction for the Board. Brandon reviewed the general information and asked the Board to evaluate the proposal before April. He suggested reviewing the positions we have now, the voting rights, and term limits. Michelle said the reason for the discussion is a potential update to a portion of the bylaws. She emphasized that in light of our previous Town Hall meeting, it’s clear there is a disparity of voices on the Board. She requested the Board begin thinking about what type of voice each member should have; what is the ideal Board size; how can the Board be most effective.
 
This item was tabled to the April Board meeting due to lack of time for discussion.
 
9. Other Business
Michelle introduced Brand Cammarata, stating that he is being considered for the Western Planner Representative appointment to fill the vacancy triggered by Julio’s resignation. The appointment will most likely be up for consideration at the April meeting.
 
Motion by Eric to adjourn at 4:04 p.m.
Second by Libby
Discussion: None
Vote: Unanimous
 

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